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Community governance review

In 2022, we carried out a community governance review to look at parish council and community council arrangements in the Middlesbrough Council area. You can read the recommendations of the review below.

The Reorganisation Order is a legal document which explains the changes which will be made, and the date the changes will happen.

One of the recommendations was to change the electoral ward boundaries for Nunthorpe ward to include 12-16 Milan Grove and the Brethren's area. This is a change which needed approval from The Local Government Boundary Commission for England. This approval has been given, and the change has now come into force. You can find out more in the legal order (The Middlesbrough (Electoral Changes) Order 2023).

The recommendations


i. That the Stainton and Thornton Parish Council boundary is retained and unaltered.

ii. That the number of parish councillors to be elected for Stainton and Thornton Parish Council remains at 7.

iii. That Nunthorpe Parish Council is retained with the following proposed changes:

a. the Parish Council boundary for Nunthorpe Parish Council is extended to be co terminus with the Nunthorpe electoral ward boundary - in other words, to include 1-29 Yew Tree Grove (TS7 8QX) and 1-16 Milan Grove (TS7 0DQ).

b. That the Council seeks permission from the Local Government Boundary Commission for England to amend Principal Council electoral ward boundaries for Nunthorpe ward to include 12-16 Milan Grove and the Brethren's area.

c. That the number of Nunthorpe parish councillors be reduced to 7.

iv. That the Council agree to a Reorganisation Order being submitted and that all changes above will take effect from the next local elections that take place on 4 May 2023.

v. That a further detailed review of community councils by the Stronger Communities Team be undertaken, to consider how we engage with community groups and assess what support is required / available.

The above recommendations were agreed at the full council meeting on 7 September 2022. View the full report to council.

What is a community governance review?


Principal authorities like Middlesbrough Council are responsible for carrying out community governance reviews.

A community governance review lets the principal council review, put in place, or make changes to community governance systems and structures, for example by creating, merging, changing parish council boundaries, or even abolishing parish councils in the review area.

The process for carrying out a community governance review is set out in the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007 and associated guidance published by the Boundary Commission.

Community councils also play an important part in Middlesbrough communities, and while they are not covered by the above legislation, we're also asking for your views on how community councils operate in Middlesbrough.

View the terms of reference for this review. You can also read the explanatory note covering key issues and the current arrangements in Middlesbrough.

Why are we consulting?


A community governance review must take account of the views of local people.

We want your views on parish council and community council arrangements in the Middlesbrough Council area, and whether these should change in the future, so Middlesbrough Council can work together to better engage with you and your community. 

This is the first community governance review that Middlesbrough Council has ever carried out, and they are usually only done once every decade, so make sure you have your say!

What are Middlesbrough's current arrangements?


Middlesbrough Council

Middlesbrough Council is the principal authority. It's responsible for providing a wide range of services to the whole town, including education, social care, planning, licensing, and bin collections.

Parish councils

Parish councils represent smaller areas of the town. They are independent of the principal authority (Middlesbrough Council). Parish councillors are elected by local residents, every four years. Parish councils have a number of legal powers, but no formal duties. This means they can focus their efforts on what their community needs most. This can include influencing services and responding to decisions made in or about the area (for example, planning applications).

Parish councils have their own budget. This comes from a precept, which is extra money added onto a resident's Council Tax bill to pay for a parish council's services.

Middlesbrough has two parish councils - Nunthorpe Parish Council and Stainton and Thornton Parish Council.

For more information about the parish councils, you can read the Nunthorpe Parish Council annual report and the Stainton and Thornton chair's report 2020-2021.

Community councils

Community councils are different to parish councils because they are not elected by people in the ward, they do not have any legal powers, and they do not have the power to collect money through a precept. A precept is extra money added onto a resident's Council Tax bill to pay for a parish council's services.

Community councils give local residents the chance to:

  • voice their opinions and concerns about their local area
  • get reports from the police and Middlesbrough Council's street wardens
  • discuss and comment on local planning applications
  • make decisions on small grants to local groups

Almost all of Middlesbrough's electoral wards (19 out of 20) have a community council. Linthorpe does not have a community council. In Central ward, the community council only represents Middlehaven, not the rest of the ward.

Proposed changes to the Nunthorpe Parish Council area


Nunthorpe Parish Council is proposing that its boundary be changed to include 1-29 Yew Tree Grove (TS7 8QX), 11-16 Milan Grove (TS7 0DQ), and all of the Brethrens Meeting Room site (Gypsy Lane, TS7 0EB).

Nunthorpe Parish Council boundary

Full timetable


The full timetable for the review is as follows:

Stage Action Date
Council Agreement 28 July 2021

Terms of reference published

Stakeholders notified with clear definition of remit of review

4 January 2022
Preliminary Stage Local briefings and meetings (members / parish councils) February 2022 to March 2022
Stage One Initial submissions invited from stakeholders on future arrangements under terms of reference 31 March 2022
Stage Two

Consideration of submissions received

Draft recommendations prepared

Draft recommendations to be considered by Corporate Affairs and Audit Committee

May 2022 to July 2022
Stage Three

Draft recommendations published for consultation

Stakeholders notified

August 2022
Stage Four

Consideration of submissions received by Council

Final recommendations prepared

Final recommendations published, concluding the review

Final recommendations approved by Council and decision made on arrangements with resolution to make a Reorganisation Order

Reorganisation Order made

August 2022 to October 2022
  Orders come into effect at next elections May 2023

Please note, a response will not be provided for individual comments or submissions, but a summary of the comments and responses will be made in the report to the Corporate Affairs and Audit committee.

View the council's consultations privacy notice and equality monitoring privacy notice.